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Pedro A. Ortega

School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
University of Pennsylvania

This is Ludwig Boltzmann (no joke). Thanks Jordi!


I am a postdoc at the University of Pennsylvania. I got my PhD in Engineering from the University of Cambridge and my BSc/Diploma in Computer Engineering from the University of Chile. My background is mainly in Physics, Mathematics and Computer Science.

:!: I am on the job market.

Research Interests

I research the foundations of Machine Learning and Cybernetics. I study the links between various topics such as Bayesian probability theory, information theory, stochastic control, economics, causality, statistical mechanics, ergodic theory and complexity theory. Other areas of interest are computational neuroscience, psychology and epistemology. Also, I'm a huge fan of minimalistic algorithms (see Dijkstra's quote further down).

Free Energy Functional (it's also meant to be a puzzling pic)

Most of my work centers on information-theoretic and statistical mechanical approaches to learning and control, leading to contributions in bounded rationality models and recasting adaptive control as a causal inference problem. I have also worked on causal induction, and on game- and decision-theoretic models in computational neuroscience.

To get a sense of my work, please refer to:

Travel Schedule

2015, Jul 23-25 CogSci @ Pasadena
2015, Aug 20 MIT @ Boston
2015, Aug 25-26 NSF-WS Learning, Perception & Control @ Washington DC
2015, Sep 1-3 EU-WS Info. & Decision Making @ London
2015, Sep 4 NCSML @ Warwick
2015, Sep 7 CBL @ Cambridge
2015, Sep 8 Gatsby @ London
2015, Sep 9 Microsoft Research @ Cambridge
2015, Sep 10 MLRG @ Oxford
2015, Sep 11 Deepmind @ London
2015, Sep 12-19 Tuebingen & Heidelberg
2015, Dec 7-12 NIPS @ Montreal

News (on Twitter)

Timeline of @AdaptiveAgents

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Towards Robust and Specific Causal Discovery from fMRI
About 3 hours, 21 mins ago by: Pedro A. Ortega (@AdaptiveAgents)

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Epigenetic regulation of human placental function and pregnancy outcome and causal inference
About 9 hours, 21 mins ago by: Pedro A. Ortega (@AdaptiveAgents)

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RT @agricolabs: Read some solid arguments in clear style against using p-values for interpreting scientific data. #likelihoodratio http://t…
About 14 hours, 8 mins ago by: Pedro A. Ortega (@AdaptiveAgents)

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RT @shakir_za: Continue to send your submissions for the NIPS 2015 Workshop on Advances in Approximate Bayesian Inference: 16 Oct. http://t…
About 14 hours, 8 mins ago by: Pedro A. Ortega (@AdaptiveAgents)

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[JMLR] Rationality, Optimism and Guarantees in General Reinforcement Learning
About 1 day, 3 hours ago by: Pedro A. Ortega (@AdaptiveAgents)


Pedro A. Ortega
Department of Engineering
University of Pennsylvania
Off. 209, Moore Building
200 S. 33rd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Email: ope [AT]

Misc. Quotes

“Man is the measure of all things: of things which are, that they are, and of things which are not, that they are not” —Protagoras

“Simplicity is a great virtue but it requires hard work to achieve it and education to appreciate it. And to make matters worse: complexity sells better.” —Dijkstra (1984) On the nature of Computing Science (EWD896)

“It seems that perfection is attained not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing more to remove.” —Antoine de Saint Exupéry (1939) Terre des Hommes

home.txt · Last modified: 2015/10/07 01:10 by peortega

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